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Days 9 and 10. Ladies and Gentlemen.... Mr Elvis Presley...

On the road again to Memphis, Tennessee....

27 °C

OK, so as you know, the next leg of our journey after the Grand Canyon was to Memphis, Tennessee and Gracelands the home of the legend that was and is, Mr Elvis Presley. Only trouble is that its over 1100 miles from the Grand Canyon... Siobhan was not best pleased!!

Day 9 and we were up early and back on the road, this time heading for El Reno in Oklahoma. To get to Oklahoma from New Mexico you have to pass through the ‘pan handle’ region of Texas. While in Texas we stopped at a petrol station to get some fuel and a bit of grub for Siobhan. However, even the temptation of a foot long hot dog was not enough to get Siobhan inside to begin with after she saw some geezer with a holster around his waist... I couldn’t see the problem, he’d left his gun in the car!! When we finally got her in there, the guy serving had to repeat 3 times ‘what d’y’all want on it’ before Siobhan finally worked out that he was asking if she wanted ketchup or mustard on it... Very funny.. I don’t think he’d ever seen a surfer dude girl from Yorkshire with a rasta hat on and baggy Nepalese pants on before.... Not sure also what the locals thought of a 30 foot camper van weaving its way through the freeways of Amarillo, Texas with Peter Kay playing ‘Show me the way to Amarillo’ full blast and me doing my best Kay impression whilst driving!!

After passing through Texas, we were into Oklahoma (our 3rd state in one day...) and heading for a place called El Reno. They dont sing about it being windy in Oklahoma for nothing.... The BEAST was all over the place on the Freeway, so I was glad it was only 360 miles today. Arriving safely, we decided to eat in the local Cherokee Restaurant. This place turned out to be where all the locals ate, so you can imagine how quiet it went we we walked in!!! It was friendly enough though when we sat down and the food was fantastic. Simple stuff, but really good food. Siobhan had Buffalo steak which to me tasted like a ‘gamey’ version of beef and I had the best ribeye steak I’d had in years. It was funny though. We didn’t have a starter or pudding yet couldn’t finish the main meal we’d been given, yet the locals were polishing trays of food like it was going out of fashion... I felt a bit anorexic compared to those guys!!

Day 10 and it was El Reno to Memphis. Just over 500 miles from Oklahoma, passing through Johhny Cash’s birth state of Arkansas and then just over the State line into Memphis, Tennessee. The route from Oklahoma and through Arkansas took us through some lovely countryside with lakes and rivers etc though Siobhan missed most of it ‘cos she was kipping... With over 500 miles completed though and only 10 miles to go what did I see in the rear view mirror?? Flashing blue lights and then the siren started.... Pulling over, I waited to see what happens next. After a few minutes the policeman got out of his car (a raving mad, black Hummer... Very nice...) and came up to Siobhan’s side. “Can I see your licence please sir?” Checking out my new UK picture licence he obviously thought I was dodgy and asked me to get out of the vehicle... (All Siobhan wanted to do was take a picture...)

After asking loads of questions about where I had come from, where I was going, etc, I got around to asking why he’d stopped me. “Sir, you were doing 29mph in a 50mph zone. Did you not notice the mile long traffic behind you??” The shame of it... Pulled over for going too slow!! By this time two other cop cars had pulled up as ‘support’...
After I told him we were headed for the Gracelands RV park (turn right at the Heartbreak Hotel and its at the end of Lonely Street.. Seriously...) we shook hands and he sent me on my way....

This now made us late for booking into the site, so it was a night registration job. (ie see what sites are free and choose one... ) When I told the security guard on the gate why we were late, he nearly wet himself. Ah well. We are here safely and have set up on a pitch on Love me Tender Blvd (no laughing please..).

The Gracelands tour and a trip to the legendary Sun Studios happens tomorrow... C’mon...

Posted by Simon Lock 06:51 Archived in USA Tagged tourist_sites

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